Former Indian PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee passes away

19 August, 2018, 00:31 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • Atal Bihari Vajpayee The First Indian Leader to Address UNGA in Hindi

Thousands of Indians gathered Friday as the funeral pyre was lit for former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, a Hindu nationalist who was respected across the political spectrum. "He will be remembered for his huge contribution in bolstering U.S. -India relations".

Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mallikarjun Kharge and Anand Sharma, Lok Sabha Deputy Speker M. Thambidurai, former Union Minister A. Raja, MDMK chief Vaiko and TMC leader Dinesh Trivedi were among who witnessed the performance of the last rites.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi paying his last respects to former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee at the cremation ground in New Delhi on August 17, 2018. "Those who remember his state visit to the United Kingdom in 2001 will know how well respected he was here", said a Twitter post by Mark Fields, British Minister of State for Asia and the Pacific. "He will be remembered as a politician who made a major personal contribution to the friendly relations and privileged strategic partnership between our countries".


"It was India's poor who lived in his heart and who he worked for", said another, Rajkumar Tripathi, who also turned out to farewell Vajpayee. The Chief Advisor of the Interim Government, Chairman of the Privy Council, and senior government officials also attended the prayer ceremony. Khan said, "I extend sympathies to the people of India in this hour of grief".

"It was Atal Ji's exemplary leadership that set the foundations for a strong, prosperous and inclusive India in the 21st century", Modi said in a tweet.

It was during Vajpayee's term as prime minister that India's ties with Israel became more public after the two countries established diplomatic relations in 1992. "I am deeply saddened by the passing away of former prime minister and Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee".

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